Thursday, June 11, 2015

Ohio Edition

John Kasich Is Not Running to "be" President

Erick Erickson 6/10/15

“This isn’t a Presidential campaign, it is John Wilkes Booth acting on a debate stage until he can take out another Republican. Metaphorically speaking, of course.”  Dan Balz at the Washington Post reports that John Kasich has hired John Weaver and Fred Davis to be his campaign consultants, strategists, pillagers of his bank account, and all around agents of a pseudo-Presidential campaign.  Kasich has, no doubt, looked in the mirror every day since he left Fox News calling himself “Mr. President.” But Kasich is not now running to be President. Surely, like the gorilla putting on a lion’s mane and calling himself Aslan, Kasich will put on the Brooks Brothers tie and call himself a presidential candidate, but that does not make him a White House contender.

One does not hire the Republican equivalent of Bob Shrum (see e.g. Presidents Gephardt, Dukaksis, Kerrey, Gore, and Kerry) — advisors to a host of “former Presidential candidates” including McCain and Huntsman — to be President. One hires them to knife other candidates in the back…….Put more bluntly, one does not run for President in the Republican Party by hiring consultants who hate the Republican base to run the campaign of a Republican who says publicly Jesus wants him to expand government. One runs that way to destroy others within the primary process……To Read More….
Dear Friends,
My wife, Laura, and I have been praying for God's leading in how I might serve the people of Northeast Ohio. Eight years ago when Laura challenged me to get off our couch and do something to help our community, I had no idea where it might lead. From Bainbridge Trustee to the State House in Columbus, I did my best to always be open and transparent. I quickly learned that in politics, sticking to your principles was tough. The political elite have created a system that rewards those that just go along to get along. Too often our leaders in both Parties seek to punish those who put the people above Party politics.

The result is a nation in turmoil. . . runaway debt that will soon reach 20 trillion dollars, a fragile economy, social unrest, and moral decay. Meanwhile, the government insists it must violate our privacy to keep us safe, but then fails to
close our southern border! Congress refuses to defund Obamacare but then grants itself an exemption! The Federal Government spends more and more to take over education while our kids learn less and less. . . the President ignores any Constitutional limit on his authority, but Congress does nothing to stop him!

In the midst of this chaos I listen for the voices of those elected officials that will defend our way of life, our Constitution, and our Liberty. . . yet from the 14th Congressional District there is only silence. . . but I do hear the people. . . they get it. . . they know something is wrong in Washington and it will not be fixed by the same folks who are profiting from our corrupt political system. Big Government, Big Corporate welfare, and Big Party politics go hand in hand.! ….To Read More….
From Ohio Watchdog
Ohio’s budget $2.6 billion too large

By Tom Lampman | Watchdog Opinion
Ohio policymakers need to take a hard look at meaningful spending restraint if they hope to remain fiscally responsible in the long run. The massive increase of state resources in education and looming Medicaid expansion represent substantial spending growth. While the House of Representatives has proposed a more modest budget than Governor Kasich, there are still opportunities for more cuts. In the 2015 Ohio Piglet Book, The Buckeye Institute has identified nearly $2.6 billion in wasteful and excessive spending in the proposed FY 2016-2017 budget.

Ten percent of these savings come from eliminating special favors to private companies. Ohio spends close to $220 million on subsidies, grants, and other forms of corporate welfare. Some of these expenditures are presented as investments, such as the $157 million “Third Frontier” project. Research and innovation is desirable, but the government should not take the role of venture capitalists and crowd out investors’ dollars with taxpayer dollars. In other instances the spending is a straightforward grant to private interests, such as the $22.4 million in grants to racehorse breeders and racetracks.

Ending government involvement in the arts, culture, and advocacy would save an additional $55.7 million. Private philanthropy can and should fill this role, as state dollars diminish charity and create conflicts of interest. When advocacy groups are run as an arm of the state, their incentive is to advocate not only for their group’s interests but also for expanding the state’s role in said interests.

While some programs and even some departments can be eliminated, the largest savings will come from disciplined budgeting across the board. If policymakers commit to reasonable limits on spending growth, they can rein in growth in administrative and operating costs. The cost of operating a state should realistically grow with inflation and population, or about 3 percent per year. Limiting spending growth to 3 percent would save $1.9 billion, and would not impact the many departments that manage to stay within the reasonable 3 percent growth range. Going forward, this 3 percent rule should be the yardstick to prevent new wasteful programs from finding their way into future budgets.

Ohio Senate budget bill eliminates special elections
A proposal to eliminate special elections in February found its way into the state Senate’s version of the Ohio biennial budget bill.Read More

Councilman faces lawsuit for his failure to support tax increases
The dueling lawsuits between elected officials in Maple Heights continues, but the latest filing may have taxpayers shaking their heads as one councilman is sued for not supporting tax increases. Read More

Ohio’s cigarette tax proposal would light up a black market 
Cigarette smugglers, or “buttleggers,” will “load up a U-Haul” with cigarettes from a low-tax state and re-sell them in higher-tax states. The practice is little-known but highly lucrative—the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms estimates that smugglers can net up to $4 million from a single truckload. As states increase […] Read More

E-cigarette tax would destroy Ohio small businesses
Central Ohio small business owner Alec Cardellino will be out of work if lawmakers pass Gov. John Kasich's steep e-cigarette tax. (Read more)

Reform could free workers from forced union representation
Union reformers have designed an escape hatch for millions of teachers and government workers forced to accept union representation.  Read More

Reform could free workers from forced union representation
Union reformers have designed an escape hatch for millions of teachers and government workers forced to accept union representation. Read More

Southeast Ohio businesses still fighting oil and gas tax hike
In Marietta, Ohio, business owners still have an oil and gas tax hike Gov. John Kasich has fought for since 2012 hanging over their heads. [continue reading]

School districts share spending data on Ohio's online checkbook
Transparency in spending is nothing new for the Toledo Public School district, which has published its monthly check register online since 2011. But as the first urban school distric
t in Ohio to sign up for Ohio’s online checkbook, even more financial information will soon be just a click away. (Read more)

Racism at work cannot be tolerated, right? So here’s a quick quiz. Assume you hear a white employee yelling the following at black co-workers:

· “Hey, did you bring enough KFC for everyone?”and

· “I smell fried chicken and watermelon!”

Do you: a) fire the offending employee; or b) brush it off?

I’m going to lay pretty decent odds that most of you opted for choice “a.” Would you believe, though, that according to one NLRB judge, the answer depends on whether the racist employee is walking a picket line.

In Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. (6/5/15) [pdf], Administrative Law Judge Randazzo concluded that, while clearly racist, offensive, and inappropriate, the employer violated the NLRA when it fired the offending employee because he made the remarks in the context of a strike and there were no corresponding threats of violence:

Runion’s “KFC” and “fried chicken and watermelon”statements most certainly were racist, offensive, and reprehensible, but they were not violent in character, and they did not contain any overt or implied threats to replacement workers or their property. The statements were also unaccompanied by any threatening behavior or physical acts of intimidation by Runion towards the replacement workers in the vans.… The record evidence in this case does not establish that Runion’s statements were coercive or intimidating to the exercise of employees’ Section 7 rights, and it does not establish that the statements raised the likelihood of imminent physical confrontation.

Thus, an employee is justified, under the NLRA, to be as racist as he wants to be as long as:

1) the comments are made in the context of otherwise protected, concerted activity, and b) the comments are not accompanied by violence or overt threats of violence.

Although the breadth of the NLRB’s current iteration’s interpretation of “protected concerted activity” should surprise no one, I am stunned that this ALJ has gone this far.

No employee should be subjected to this type of abuse, picket line or no picket line, and it is shameful that this type of misconduct is condoned.

Employers should not be forced into a Hobson’s Choice between the NLRA and Title VII. Retaining the offender may save the employer from liability under the NLRA, but it won’t do the employer any favors if the victim pushes the issue under Title VII.

If nothing else, this case is a scary reminder of how far the NLRB and its judges will go to fine protected concerted activity. Employers, you are warned.

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